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I get money from my dad's social security. I want to spend the money on college, but he spends it on himself. Anything I can do?

Hobart, IN |

I'm 15, and I get money from my fathers social security. I really want to save the money, because I know if I don't, then I won't have a way to pay my way through college. However, he spends it month after month on himself, even when I tell him why I want to save it up.

Attorney Answers 3

Posted

If you can prove he is spending it on himself and not on you (such as part of your shelter (rent), food, utilities, etc.), then you can ask the SSA to remove your father as Representative Payee and have another person made RP. Or, if you became emancipated under the law, you could have the moneys paid directly to you, for you to pay those rent/utility/food/insurance bills with.

With regard to college, I understand it would be nice to know you don't have to take out school loans, or work your self hard at a part or full time job to pay school as you go. But unless your dad has some extra wealth unmentioned, or investment income aside from his SSD, it may very well be that the "dependent" benefits going to you are being used to keep you guys afloat - roof over your head, food in the fridge, etc. Someone is paying those bills that cover both of you, and rarely does a dependent benefit ever actually cover the expenses related to the child's living needs. So you may want to double check your fact, just in case this is the possibility, before you accuse your father of stealing your money - it could very well be going, along with much of his money, to your survival.

Stephanie O. Joy, Esq., is an attorney licensed in New Jersey, while currently practicing federal Social Security Disability law. Answers to questions both in NJ and elsewhere are for general purposes only and do not establish an attorney-client relationship, nor do they constitute legal advice. Rather, they is for general informational purposes only.

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Gary Roger Waitzman

Gary Roger Waitzman

Posted

I agree

Jack Justin Adams

Jack Justin Adams

Posted

This is very good information. I am sure at age 15 it may be tough to basically take on your father but Social Security has these rules for a reason . Please read Stephanie's answer.

Posted

He has an obligation to use the social security for your support. You may have to talk to social security and try and get another representative appointed for your benefit.

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Posted

Dedicated Accounts

As representative payee for a disabled child under age 18 who is eligible for large past-due Supplemental Security Income (SSI) payments (usually any payment covering more than six months of the current benefit rate) you are required to open a separate account at a financial institution, which is referred to as a “dedicated account”.
You Dad has to have a dedicated account ands file yearly reports.

The past-due payments will be deposited directly into that dedicated account. These funds can only be used for expenses directly related to the child’

The requirements of a dedicated account are:

It must be separate from the account used for the regular monthly benefit payment and can only be a checking, savings, or money market account.
Other funds, except for certain past-due SSI benefits, cannot be commingled with the funds in the “dedicated account”.
It cannot be in the form of certificates of deposit, mutual funds, stocks, bonds, or trusts.
The title on the dedicated account must show that the child owns the funds, including interest.
Dedicated account funds can be used for the following expenses:

Medical treatment; and
Education or job skills training.
The Social Security Administration will allow the following expenses, if they benefit the child and are related to the child’s disability:

Personal needs or assistance (e.g., in-home nursing care);
Special equipment;
Housing modification;
Therapy or rehabilitation; or
Other items or services approved by your local Social Security office, like legal fees incurred by the child in establishing a claim for disabled child’s benefits.
Dedicated accounts may not be used for basic monthly maintenance costs such as food, clothing, or shelter. The regular monthly benefit received for the child should be used for all monthly maintenance costs.

Monitoring Dedicated Accounts

The Social Security Administration requires you as representative payee to complete a yearly report on the use of the dedicated account funds as well as the regular monthly benefits received on the child’s behalf.

It is important to keep receipts, bank statements, and maintain an expense record for at least two years as verification of expenditures. You, as representative payee should be able to provide us with an explanation of any expenditure and how it relates to the child’s disability.

NOTE: If you no longer serve as payee for a child with a dedicated account, you must complete a final accounting of the funds and return the balance of the account to the Social Security Administration. The amount returned will be transferred to a new dedicated account opened by the new payee.

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Gary Roger Waitzman

Gary Roger Waitzman

Posted

Good information.